• Nature

    The sound of a single tree

    A solitary field tree is one of those rare pleasures that cannot adequately be experienced in the proper way -- thoughtfully, and alone -- without trespassing. But to do so where they are still accessible is to encounter a vibrant and sociable spirit, ready with countless prods to the imagination.

  • Design

    Roundabout ways

    Driving had long been a settled science, but the roundabout seems to be throwing a lot of us for a loop. How can something be hated and loved at the same time? Perhaps it's a matter of design.

  • History

    A stroll through Old Rawsonville

    Many a historian and idle daydreamer has wished for a time machine. Unfortunately, we are destined to satisfy our curiosity with what past generations have left us: the yellowed clippings, the fragile photographs, and the fading memories that we often encounter in our quest to connect the past to the present. Today, we will do the next best thing: step into some newly revealed photos of old Rawsonville.

  • Culture,  Environment

    Knocking off wild apples

    Just as springtime brings the roadside forager to stalk the wild asparagus, fall-time conjures visions of wild apples -- the tart and teasing sugar-plums of this evocative, transitional season.

  • History

    A day with the freight agents at Willow Run

    In the case of old photographs, the great equalizer is time and neglect -- by which any old photo, no matter how insignificant at the time it was taken, has a similar chance at achieving historical value. Today, we will examine a few previously unseen photos from the American Airlines freight agents' office at Willow Run Airport, taken in the early 1950s.

  • Design

    The proof is in the packaging

    Some products are so small in proportion to their value that a reasonably-priced package may end up being more package than product. But this presents a peculiar possibility: that a small hiccup in the manufacturing chain could lead to a case of all package and no product -- and leaving no evidence but your indignation.